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Between Justice and PoliticsThe Ligue des Droits de l'Homme, 1898-1945$
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William D. Irvine

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780804753173

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804753173.001.0001

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The League from Below

The League from Below

(p.111) Five The League from Below
Between Justice and Politics
Stanford University Press

The Ligue des droits de l'homme (League of the Rights of Man) justified its involvement in politics or in issues of broad public policy by insisting that it was in defense of civil liberties. Although the League was known for its stand on national or international politics, it also built a reputation of defending common citizens such as civil servants, widows, and pensioners against injustice. By the 1930s the League's local sections were handling almost 20,000 such cases per year. Many cases involved personal disputes within the civil service. The League's passion for justice and hard-nosed mastery of France's judicial system was evident in the Seznec case, which created tensions among its members. This case involved Guillaume Seznec, a sawmill owner who was accused of killing Pierre Quemeneur, a local entrepreneur and politician.

Keywords:   Ligue des droits de l'homme, League of the Rights of Man, politics, civil liberties, civil service, injustice, France, Guillaume Seznec, Pierre Quemeneur, judicial system

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